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First Results on the Neutrino Mass from KATRIN

First Results on the Neutrino Mass from KATRIN

On Friday September 13th, the first results obtained by the KATRIN experiment were reported at the TAUP conference in TOYAMA (JAPAN), see here the slides. The Karlsruhe TRItium Neutrino (KATRIN) experiment was designed to measure the neutrino mass looking into the end of the β-decay spectrum of Tritium molecules. Up to date the upper limit on the neutrino mass was 2.3 eV, which was set by the experiments Mainz and Troitsk, measuring using the same principle as KATRIN. Their first result, reported at TAUP, has been obtained analyzing a 4 week period of data taking, setting the most stringent upper bound up to date at 1.1 eV. KATRIN has a potential of lowering this limit up to 0.2 eV, one order of magnitude below previous measurements, and has a potential of discovering the absolute neutrino mass provided it is larger than 0.35 eV, see Figure 1.




Figure 1: Passed and future neutrino mass limits vs year. The yellow stars correspond to the       KATRIN new and expected in 2024 limits.


The future plans for KATRIN are to keep on taking data 1000 days more in order to either reach their final sensitivity of 0.2 eV or discover the absolute neutrino mass by 2024, stay tuned!


"Kathrin Valerius, Elusives team member of KIT, is a member of the KATRIN collaboration and actually one of the analysis coordinators"